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Author Gear for Kids
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NSW
383 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 11:24 am        Report    
My two kids (6 and 4) arent ready this summer, but after watching them scoot off on bikes and scooters with no fear I know its not going to be long... There have been some excellent threads here about gear and instructing / coaxing kids along from which I have gained a lot and have also been reminded of my own beginnings...(early 80's high clew wavesail for a 10 year old grrrr) Rigs i dont see as a problem - there are plenty of (relatively) cheap kids rigs available that have the ability to grow....but the board has got me worried...threads have centred on modifying existing boards to fit a centre fin (ala sea skip) or going down the newer boards like the sboard start.. This got me thinking - what about a cheap formula board - yes its not going to be as durable - the non stick may not be nice for the kids (easily fixed with a roll of eva) What are peoples thoughts? - will a small kids sail (2-3m) generate enough force to steer a formula board? Thanking respondents in advance
WA
1166 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 12:03 pm        Report    
dont be a wally just spend the coil on a *board start or JP funster or equivalent. they hold their value really well, and you are much more likely to ensure the kids get excited and keep coming back for more. dont kid yourself with an old formula board, it will be too much hard work for the kids. A centre board is key for keeping confidence up so they can stay upwind and avoid too many walks of shame.
SA
2501 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 12:40 pm        Report    
Agreed about the centre board, its the key to keeping the kids going on the same tack and not losing confidenceby drifting too far, while also maintaining a more stable platform. I am not sure about the specs on formula boards, but I can highly recommend a nice soft deck (all over) as well as a centre board, and lots of volume, We have an RRD 165 ltr, perfect for all ages to learn on, best investment we ever made.
NSW
21 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 2:36 pm        Report    
This is a photo of my daughter on a home made rig.Chopped sail,chopped mast,chopped boom, chopped fin on my formula board.Works great and she seems to like it.If she is still keen through summer will invest in some decent gear but was hesitant to spend money until I knew if she liked it.
QLD
134 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 5:07 pm        Report    
Hi, I learnt about 4 years ago on an old Waitata slalom (125L) and weighed about 40 KG at 10 yrs old. We had bought a starboard start 3m kit and it seemed great to learn on. Alot of people are reccomending larger boards these days, but I am glad my dad was I guess too stingy to buy a big volume board and let me learn on his old Waitata. Rather than move from a big stable floater to a low volume board with some possible trouble, I easily got used to a 96L Hypersonic due to ealier years on a less stable board. I don't know what it is like to start with a large learner board as I didn't do so. However, this option is a cheaper alternative and in my opinion, would make it easier move into the more advanced aspects of sailing in latter years.
WA
11986 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 6:47 pm        Report    
A formula would be acceptable...... this 'have to have proper gear' thing really annoys me. Yeeeesssss it is not quite ideal to use a Formula, and buying good stuff encourages the kiddlywinks, but Go or Start will be $500+ and they may hate it. Lots of us learned on wally's and so on.... now did JP or Robby Naish or Bjorn Dunkerbeck seem to miss out on anything when they learned on a long skinny plastic thing? I saw a Formula for $300 the other day. It was 80cm wide like a learner board (not one of the 1m wide Formulas which would be too big for a kid). Router vs underside will get a finbox for a centre fin into it, you can get a finbox for free from a bvggered waveboard, and $20 buys a few thin yoga mats for the deck at some cheapo place like Red Dot or Crazy Clarks. Then Dad can still have some fun in light winds too.
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 6:49 pm        Report    
Hi Johno, that's an impressive setup. great stuff. you have got me thinking as i have a 5.8m sail in the garage that is brand new except for a trashed luff in the lower part of the sail. i can see myself getting out the sissors. could you let me know how you managed to get the eyelts into the sail? i am sure i could make 2 small sails from the 5.8 if i use the top part and then recut the middle section. i was also wondering if you think it's important to seamr the mono along the foot? i'm a hack with a sewing machine. cheers
WA
11986 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 6:54 pm        Report    
Would not be mega strong but u can get an eyelet tool thingo at Hardware stores, uses a mandrel and hammer to bang in brass ones. Rooool cheap
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 7:01 pm        Report    
^ cheers mark, i'll look at the hardware store. i'm one of those hoarders of windsurfing stuff even after it breaks. i figured one day i'd find a use. even if it was just the battens or pulleys.
NSW
472 Posts
Posted 12/10/2009, 8:10 pm        Report    
Ben, a few years ago I followed some instructions in Windsurfing mag and made up a centreboard from a plastic cutting board and suction cups! It attaches to the underside of my old formula board and works well for my wife in light wind. Adds a lot of drag so obviously you wont plane with it, but it helps keep upwind. Google found the article for me: http://www.windsurfingmag.com/article/Bonus-Coverage/Do-it-Yourself---Super-Suck-Center-Board I also found a few pics in my archive from the construction: Its in my trailer so remind me next time i see you and I can pull it out and show you. Cheers James
SA
2501 Posts
Posted 13/10/2009, 5:30 am        Report    
'Proper Gear' is the perfect world scenario, I guess where I am coming from is that I am so passionate about the sport, I want people to give it a try and keep coming back for more. I would feel bad for a friend or family member having a go on some of our weekend warrior gear, maybe something that is too small, to bulky, maybe too advanced for the raw beginnner etc....be a shame if they lost interest after one try I considered boards very carefully when buying our daughters beginner board, a second hand damaged RRD, I set a budget of $600, then blew it by $100. I consider it personally to be the best investment of any kit we have ever bought. My daughter uses it, My wife and I use it for practicing light wind stuff, and its been used by at least 20 others over the last few years to get up and going for the first time. Adelaide has a very limited supply of these formula boards, although I do remember talking to one of the speedies about his in his trailer one day and saw its potential as a beginner / kids board,
Mark _australia said...
A formula would be acceptable...... this 'have to have proper gear' thing really annoys me. Yeeeesssss it is not quite ideal to use a Formula, and buying good stuff encourages the kiddlywinks, but Go or Start will be $500+ and they may hate it. Lots of us learned on wally's and so on.... now did JP or Robby Naish or Bjorn Dunkerbeck seem to miss out on anything when they learned on a long skinny plastic thing? I saw a Formula for $300 the other day. It was 80cm wide like a learner board (not one of the 1m wide Formulas which would be too big for a kid). Router vs underside will get a finbox for a centre fin into it, you can get a finbox for free from a bvggered waveboard, and $20 buys a few thin yoga mats for the deck at some cheapo place like Red Dot or Crazy Clarks. Then Dad can still have some fun in light winds too.
NSW
21 Posts
Posted 13/10/2009, 6:56 pm        Report    
Hi Gestalt. I just cut along the top of the batten which left the stitching still in place so the mono wont tear.Had an eyelet in clew fitted buy local upholsterer because the hardware store ones were to small and he also stitched on pulley at base but eyelet would have been enough .Hand sewed a bit of trim around luff pocket. John.
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 13/10/2009, 8:19 pm        Report    
cheers.
NSW
383 Posts
Posted 14/10/2009, 1:36 pm        Report    
Thanks to all who responded...even those thought i was a wally... Johno, you hit the nail on the head - i will spend the money - if the like it and want to continue ...btw love that photo My feelings were that the rig was the most important as its the thing they ahve to wrestle with the most and so I willing to spend up initially - Board wise though you just need something stable - and if a 11m cant force a formula board sideways - surely a 2m with a cut down fin should be ok... James - i will have a look on Sat - is that a BIC formula board?
WA
295 Posts
Posted 16/10/2009, 9:14 am        Report    
Im in the same postion my 6 year old is keen to start, I was thinking one of those SUP/ windsurfer cross overs, as a starting point, I think starboard make one, anyone had any experience with these and kids? Or are they simply to long for a kid to handle? I could pull together a small rig as discussed earlier, have some old sales etc.. Plus get a bonus SUP to take the young bloke out for a surf
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 10:37 am        Report    
inspired by johno here is phase 1 complete. yes it was hard to take the knife to my sail..... but we all know the kids are worth it. started life as a 5.8m KA Kult 1.2 Sqm approx, i use a 2m starboard kids rig as a template. in the top left of the image is an outdoor umbrella that has seen better days. i believe it contains and aluminium mast. should i tell the wife
NSW
881 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 11:06 am        Report    
The main thing to consider is the boom... the diameter of the tubing in particular. Little hands will struggle to wrap around and hold a normal sized boom. Not sure if there is something that could be 'engineered' to suit but I do know the booms that come with the Hot Sails kids rig are the ducks nuts. Fully gripped like a traditional boom but with a diameter that kids can easily handle !
NSW
383 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 12:57 pm        Report    
hey gestie - you didnt use a batten pocket as the foot ala Johno - are you going to roll the foot and stitch / tape? - I am going to go down the same route
NSW
260 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 1:05 pm        Report    
You should think about getting one of these. I saw them demo'ed earlier this year, and it really speeds up the learning process http://www.star-board.com/2010/products/products_ido.php
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 1:06 pm        Report    
cheers windwarrior, i think i will use the boom in the windwanderers gear library at first but will need to get something for permanent use. will look into it. here are some more images mast made from aluminium pole take from outdoor setting umbrella, you can still see the angle adjuster attached at the top. think neil pryde. anyways, cut that off. mast trimmed down to size with daughter fitting boom rigged results. i haven't got the eyelts in so i couldn't tension the sail. hi ben555, yeah i had to cut it smaller as the sail would have been around 2 sqm. my gut feel is that the head is to big for the sail. i may end up trimming that further also. then i'll get it seemed. i'll get the eyelets put in first and see how it looks when tensioned.
NSW
383 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 1:08 pm        Report    
Brilliant gestalt Love to see them involved in the process - helps build the excitement
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 1:18 pm        Report    
cheers ben, both daughters helped me do it. the one in the photos 3.5 so will need some more swimming lessons before going too far. my 6 year old is also chomping at the bit to windsurf. i guess like others on the forum my kids have been immersed in it since birth. jeez they ring me at work and tell me it's windy. seems the big ticket item is we are "decorating" the sail with frangipani flowers.....
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 1:28 pm        Report    
just had a thought, i'll use black duct tape as a seam strengthener
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 4:20 pm        Report    
i stopped in at the hardware store on the way home and found a 12mm eyelet tool. stuck the eyelts in and put some clear scotch duct tape along the foot. i still think for kids the head of the sail is too big. if you look closely you will see a couple of black pen marks on the sail. i will cut the sail down to reflect this. also the battens need work. the head batten needs to be loosened. plus the mid batten needs to be sanded down to soften it. i'm also hoping that the head and leach recut will help with this.
NSW
1246 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 4:34 pm        Report    
As far as boards go IDE suggest looking at a second hand paddleboard. We've had one for the last couple of years and the young one (11yrs) loves it. He learnt to sail on it paddle on it and surf on it. We've tried all kinds of boards over the years and by far this has been the best. Tracks well up wind and is stable. I can even rode a wave with him on it and show him how to move the sail ect. If he starts to get frustrated with the sailing side of things we just rip the rig off and he goes for a paddle around. Wins handsdown as the most versatile bit of gear I've ever bought for the family.
NSW
1246 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 4:41 pm        Report    
As far as boards go IDE suggest looking at a second hand paddleboard. We've had one for the last couple of years and the young one (11yrs) loves it. He learnt to sail on it paddle on it and surf on it. We've tried all kinds of boards over the years and by far this has been the best. Tracks well up wind and is stable. I can even rode a wave with him on it and show him how to move the sail ect. If he starts to get frustrated with the sailing side of things we just rip the rig off and he goes for a paddle around. Wins handsdown as the most versatile bit of gear I've ever bought for the family.
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 19/10/2009, 11:00 pm        Report    
on the topic of boards does anyone have any feedback on the kids range of boards available. i've taught kids on one designs, and start style boards but never on the kids range of boards. the reality is that kid's rigs say between 1.5-2.5 Sqm aren't ideal on adult boards and the youngsters can struggle a little with turning. has anyone had the chance to try any of the kid's boards like starboard pro kids go, or start M exocet cruiser kids jp young gun 115 fanatic ripper or any others?
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 25/10/2009, 6:21 pm        Report    
^ Bump on the kids boards
WA
3003 Posts
Posted 25/10/2009, 6:45 pm        Report    
Gestalt said...
on the topic of boards does anyone have any feedback on the kids range of boards available. i've taught kids on one designs, and start style boards but never on the kids range of boards. the reality is that kid's rigs say between 1.5-2.5 Sqm aren't ideal on adult boards and the youngsters can struggle a little with turning. has anyone had the chance to try any of the kid's boards like starboard pro kids go, or start M exocet cruiser kids jp young gun 115 fanatic ripper or any others?
We are using a starboard kiddy with a 2.5m sail and kids rig. Works well. Easy to uphaul, stable and cool graphics which the kids love.
QLD
9889 Posts
Posted 25/10/2009, 7:34 pm        Report    
thanks windxstasy
NSW
1967 Posts
Posted 25/10/2009, 9:03 pm        Report    
As a try, I was able to get my hands on a (large) SUP Starboard for teaching couple of kids this summer. It is big, but incredibly forgivingly stable. Plus, as the last replier said: the soft pad and graphics get beginners excited about the whole thing before they even set feet on the board. After that, they get going pretty quick, given a proper light rig with low booms. Not sure I would suggest buying that board for learning yet, would need more experience. A plus is that the board has impeccable finish, great top, and it can be used for other uses, unlike a Go say. Minus is that it's big.
 
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